The National Coalition for Core Arts Standards (NCCAS) has released a narrative framework document that details the rationale, goals, and strategy of the new National Standards for Arts Education that are currently being written by five arts discipline teams in dance, media arts, music, theatre, and visual arts.
NCCAS, a coalition of nine national arts and education organizations, is committed to developing a next generation of voluntary, researched-based arts education standards that will build on the foundation created by the 1994 standards (and the 2005 Standards for Learning and Teaching Dance in the Arts), support the 21st-century needs of students and teachers, help ensure that all students are college and career ready, and affirm the place of arts education in a balanced core curriculum.
The framework document guides readers through the historical context for arts education and standards, the foundational research and philosophical basis for the work, and explores what it means to be artistically literate, based on the artistic processes of creating, performing/presenting/producing, responding, and connecting. The narrative also articulates the fundamental creative arts practices by which students learn in individual arts disciplines and transfer their knowledge, skills and habits to other contexts and settings.
On January 18 a video presentation was held during which the NCCAS framing committee members walked the audience through the narrative document and its companion matrix—a template that provides a unified view of the standards for the five arts disciplines, while allowing the distinguishing characteristics of each discipline to be preserved. Leadership and the discipline chairs explained an updated timeline for the work and shared plans for a draft review process that is set to begin this summer.
To learn more about the next generation of voluntary national arts standards, or to review video archives of previous presentations, please visit the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards website at http://nccas.wikispaces.com.
To download the Conceptual Framework please go to http://nccas.wikispaces.com/Conceptual+Framework and download the .pdf.
Four State Education Agency Directors of Arts Education (SEADAE) members have been nominated by the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards to serve with the writing teams that will produce the next generation of arts standards. SEADAE member Dale Schmid of the New Jersey Department of Education will serve on the Dance writing team. SEADAE member Dr. Richard Baker of the Louisiana State Department of Education will serve on the Music writing team. SEADAE member Jack Mitchell of the California Department of Education will serve on the Theatre writing team and SEADAE member Joyce Huser of Kansas will serve on the Visual Arts writing team.
The National Coalition of Core Arts Standards (NCCAS) announced the selection of writing teams and chairs for the next generation of arts standards project on Friday December 16th. NCCAS is a coalition of eight national organizations committed to developing new voluntary arts education standards that will build on the foundations created by the 1994 National Arts Standards and, more recently, the 2005 Standards for Learning and Teaching Dance in the Arts, to help guide curriculum designers, teacher training programs, funders, and federal and state policy makers in their arts education decision-making.
NCCAS announced that they received more than 360 applications from throughout the country to serve on one of the four writing teams of dance, music, theatre and visual arts. The coalition’s professional arts education organizations chose the team writers based on breadth of experience and skills in teaching, standards and curriculum writing, assessment and leadership, and practical knowledge in their area of expertise.
Lynn Tuttle, President of the State Education Agency Directors of Arts Education (SEADAE), called the selection of writers for the project “a major leap forward in our efforts to move ahead and actually begin working in earnest.” Tuttle and other SEADAE colleagues have been a guiding force in the effort to re-envision arts standards that will embrace 21st-century technology to help classroom educators better implement and assess standards-based arts instruction. “We know that this will be a complex and challenging project,” said Tuttle. “But we also know how important it is for arts teachers to articulate the skills and knowledge that ought to be available to every student in this country. If we want students to learn, we need to give our educators a framework that will help them create and teach their curricula. I think we have the team that can get this done.”
NCCAS Leadership and the chairs will meet in Reston, Virginia January 23-24 to finalize work on a learning framework that will guide the writers, and to discuss the project’s timeline and plans to include media arts as a discrete fifth arts discipline in the next generation standards. The meeting will include a streaming public Q&A period on January 24. Links to the interactive blog and available video streams will be posted the day of the event on the NCCAS website.
During the recent months I have received many questions, emails, and phone calls from arts educators and others wondering about where their local work fits with the "Common Core State Standards" (CCSS) and what is happening with the national work in arts education. Hopefully the following will answer questions and provide you with information to help guide your work at the local level.
The National Coalition for Core Arts Standards (NCCAS) coalition is a newly formed partnership of organizations and states who will lead the revision of the 1994 National Standards for Arts Education. The NCCAS plans to complete its work and release new, national voluntary arts education standards by December, 2012. The standards will describe what students should know and be able to do as a result of a quality curricular arts education program. NCCAS is committed to developing a next generation of voluntary arts education standards that will build on the foundation created by the 1994 document, support the 21st-century needs of students and teachers, help ensure that all students are college and career ready, and affirm the place of arts education in a balanced core curriculum.
NCCAS will make the creation of the new arts standards an inclusive process, with input from a broad range of arts educators and decision-makers. The revised standards will be grounded in arts education best practice drawn from the United States and abroad, as well as a comprehensive review of developmental research.
The organizations who are partners in the NCCAS:
At the present time Maine arts educators are responsible for Maine's 2007 Learning Results: Parameters for Essential Instruction which is a comprehensive response to the educational needs of Maine students. This is described in the legislated document Regulation 132.
You may have read recently on the meartsed blog that the NCCAS coalition put a call out for candidates interested in serving on a writing committee. They were seeking teams of 10 content experts for each of the discipline areas of dance, music, theatre and visual arts to help develop the next generation of voluntary arts standards. Each discipline writing team will include a balance of members across specific areas of expertise, geography, diversity and experience.
What can you do to keep abreast of the progress of standards work for arts education?
- Read the meartsed blog on a regular basis for updates - I will provide updates as the work progresses.
- Check the NCCAS wiki page - as changes occur there will be news releases documented there.
- Be proactive at the local level providing information on the arts education standards work as it unfolds.
- Stay abreast of Maine's arts assessment initiative so you can communicate with your administration, colleagues, and parents.
We are at an exciting time in education with many shifts that will benefit all students being successful! If you have questions, concerns, or suggestions please email Argy Nestor at firstname.lastname@example.org.